Thrift Stores & Donation Center – New Hours

We’re heading into summer and as the days continue to get longer so are our operating hours at our two Thrift Stores and our Donation Center!

Starting Monday, June 15th, the new hours are:

  • Hagerstown Thrift Store – MON – SAT 9am – 4:30pm. Our Hagerstown Thrift Store is located on our central parking lot at 215 W. Church St. For more info on our Hagerstown location please call 301.739.1114
  • Chambersburg Thrift Store – MON – SAT 9am – 4pm. Our Chambersburg Thrift Store is conveniently located in downtown Chambersburg at 64 S. Main St. For info about our Chambersburg store please call 717.263.9345
  • Donation Center – MON – SAT 9am – 4pm. Our Donation Center is located at the back of our central parking lot at 215 W. Church St. in Hagerstown. Please note that our Donation Center is now open on Monday’s.

Our Hagerstown & Chambersburg Thrift Stores continue to operate at 50% capacity at this time. Please remember to wear a mask when shopping in our stores and please observe proper social distancing when possible.

Our donation truck program is still suspended. Once we resume operation we will be sure to post on our website and social media. We are still in the process of hiring a truck driver. If you, or someone you know, is looking for part time work please contact us by calling 301.739.1165 or emailing info@hagerstownhopecenter.com. Go to http://www.hagerstownhopecenter.com to learn more about the truck driver position.

For Our City: Bridge of Life Teens Serve God in Their Own Backyard

This summer a few teens from One Accord youth group at Bridge of Life Church in downtown Hagerstown took a missions trip. But this missions trip wasn’t to another country or even a different part of the USA – they ministered this summer in their own backyard by volunteering at Camp Wild!

During our second week of camp, 5 teens and youth pastor, Colt Shingler, helped all over the place at Camp Wild. From helping with the small groups, to serving lunches, playing games, riding hayrides, and building friendships with our campers, the teens spent their week changing lives in their own city!

We are so thankful to One Accord for coming to Camp Wild to help minister to the kids of Hagerstown. Teens are so important to connecting with kids in our Wildside Youth program so we’re thankful for each of these young people who happily served each day. And to be able to do a missions trip in your own town is such a fun opportunity and a way to connect the teens with the heart of this city.

If you are looking for a church to attend or a youth group for your teens then be sure to check out Bridge of Life Church in downtown Hagerstown. Visit http://www.bridgeoflife.org to learn more including service times and other ministries.

If your church or youth group would like to help at Camp Wild or any other events and activities at The Hope Center like our upcoming Thrift Store Day on Sept.14th then please give us a call at 301.739.1165 or email info@hagerstownhopecenter.com.

 

Thanksgiving Day Success: Thank You, Volunteers!

There’s so much prep work, shopping, cleaning and cooking for Thanksgiving but there’s even so much more to do when you’re preparing for 300 guests!

But that didn’t slow us down at all. Each year, since our very beginning in 1955, we’ve hosted a community meal for anyone and everyone in Hagerstown who is hungry or just wants some company on Thanksgiving Day.

Our free buffet is complete with roast turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, sweet potatoes, sauerkraut, succotash, cranberry sauce, fruit cocktail, pie and more!

And since it’s a family affair we even had kids activities for all the little ones thanks to the staff and volunteers from our kids program, Wildside Youth Ministries (www.wildsideyouth.com).

Everyone had a great time celebrating, feasting and giving thanks together. And we even had a pilgrim show up to the celebration! Enjoy this collage of pics from our Great Hagerstown Thanksgiving Feast but be sure to check out more pictures from the celebration at http://www.hagerstownhopecenter.com.

But none of  this would’ve been possible without the support of our gracious and generous community. From the countless donations received to the hours served by staff and volunteers, this event is a success because of our incredible friends and neighbors in the  greater Hagerstown region. We feel that just saying “thank you” doesn’t quite sum up how grateful we truly are to each and every one of you who helped us in one way or another this Thanksgiving season. We thank God for each of you and your compassion and love for our community.

Listed below are all the names of our MVP’s from our Great Hagerstown Thanksgiving Feast. If you are familiar with of any of these fine people then please be sure to personally thank them for helping make Thanksgiving special for all of our guests!

The 2017 Great Hagerstown Thanksgiving Feast Staff (S) & Volunteers (V):

  • Sonny & Becky Shank (S)
  • Dorcas Black (S)
  • Sharon & Henry Hughes (V)
  • Frank Shortt (S)
  • Joe & Marianne Elliot (V)
  • Richard Quesenberry (V)
  • Michael Black (V)
  • Doug Walker (V)
  • Melanie Hughes (V)
  • Laurel Walker (V)
  • Larry Hose (V)
  • Russ & Diane Ellis (V)
  • John Borelli (V)
  • Jim & Barb Resh (V)
  • Teresa Yates & family (V)
  • Matt & Effie Tiches and family (V)
  • Angela Galvan & family (V)
  • Amanda Miles (V)
  • Dr. Sidney Chang (V)
  • Sherita Jones (V)
  • Donnie & Angie Cross and family (V)
  • Matt & Staci Sargent and family (V)
  • Paul & Stacy Mickley and family (V)
  • David & Karen Hillen (V)
  • Jeff Wine (V)
  • Chris Shank (S)
  • Adrian Black (S)
  • Stephanie Medina (V)
  • Aaron Black (V)
  • Mitcha & Al Shay (V)

 

Another Successful Year at Camp Wild

The carefree days of summer have come and gone but while we still bask in the warmth of this long summer season, we can look back at all the fun-filled days of another great year at Camp Wild.

Camp Wild gave over 200 kids in Hagerstown the opportunity to experience a week of action-packed fun where they played games, sang & danced, created art, explored new worlds, made friendships and learned about how to live a life for Christ.

If you’re reading this and you are totally unfamiliar with Camp Wild let us take a quick moment to catch you up to speed. Camp Wild is a free day camp for kids ages 5-12 in Hagerstown. Transportation to and from the camp is provided for free along with lunch and all activities. The morning takes place in the Trinity Center at The Hope Center where the kids have time to play various games and sports while also interacting with our counselors. Then they have a time of praise & worship music where they can sing and dance their hearts out followed by a very interactive lesson time where the kids not only learn about Jesus but are challenged to think deep and learn how to apply what they’ve learned in to everyday life. Following the lesson time the kids break into small groups where they can discuss more with their leader. It’s midday by this time which means that stomachs are growling and it’s time for lunch. After everyone gets their fill of our delicious camp food, we pack up and head out to our outdoor adventure camp area located on the Conococheague Creek near Cearfoss. There the kids enjoy various activities with their groups like Sanaa (arts & crafts area), The Dig (archaeologist treasure hunt), Life Cycles (learning about animal life) and Zulu (African experience) among other attractions. Each day the groups rotate through the various attractions so that each camper has an opportunity to experience each one. Once the group attractions are completed then it’s free time for the campers to enjoy swimming, zip line, snacks, soccer, tubing, hayrides and more.

All of this fun is provided free of charge because we feel it’s important that every kid in Hagerstown has the opportunity to experience a fun-filled summer no matter what. But to keep it free we rely heavily on donations from churches, businesses and individuals in the community. And we’re so thankful for everyone who has partnered with us to provide a great summer for thousands of kids over the years!

And while we appreciate all that our sponsors in the community do, we cannot forget to thank the volunteers who put in countless hours and lots of energy bringing Camp Wild to life and touching the lives of all these kids. We understand that it’s a very tiresome, exhausting and challenging job at times but God has always supplied us with the right people to make our camp perfect each summer. Thank you to all of our counselors, assistants, stage hands, cooks, servers, drivers and anyone else who did so much to change the lives of kids. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Ok, by this point you’re probably ready to see some pics from Camp Wild 2016, aren’t you? We don’t blame you! Enjoy the images of Camp Wild 2016. And if you want to learn more about Camp Wild then go to http://www.campwildusa.com.

Wildside Youth Ministries at The Hope Center doesn’t just host Camp Wild. The school year is full of various free activities for kids ages 5-12. To learn more about Wildside Youth go to http://www.wildsideyouth.com. You’ll get all the up-to-date info about anything and everything Wildside.

Interested in volunteering? Go to http://www.volunteerhagerstown.com, call us at 301.739.1165 or email us at hagerstownrescue@verizon.net.

Volunteers Are the Heart of The Hope Center

In 2015 we celebrated 60 years of hope at The Hope Center. And a major part of what makes it possible for us to continue to provide services to men, women & children for free are all the hours of service given by faithful, caring friends in our community who serve as volunteers at The Hope Center.

Since 1955, The Hope Center has been a lighthouse to the needy in our community. Whether it was a man addicted to alcohol, a mother in need of clothing for her children, or a family who needs some food assistance, our doors have been open everyday to help those in need without asking a dime from any of our guests…or the tax-payer.

Friends, businesses, churches and other groups in the area have financially supported us from the very beginning allowing us to help so many people without being a burden on the tax payer.

But volunteers help supplement all of our finances by providing hours upon hours of compassion and hard work in many different ways at The Hope Center.

As we celebrated our 60th Anniversary in 2015, we had some special events taking place in the community which gave us some new opportunities for volunteers to get involved and make an impact in our city. But many of the areas that volunteers gave so many hours were activities and events that happen on a regular basis at The Hope Center.

In total, we had 719 different volunteers work more than 13,394 hours! That’s incredible! This is exactly why we think that our volunteers are the best!

These volunteers worked throughout the year in one or more of the following areas of service:

  1. Sorting room
  2. Wildside Youth events (www.wildsideyouth.com)
  3. Camp Wild (www.campwildusa.com)
  4. Chapel services
  5. Men’s ministry check-in desk and teaching classes
  6. Off site: baking cakes, making sandwiches, providing food for after chapel (these are on a regular basis)
  7. Outreach: 60th anniversary events (Rock the Run 5K; Party-in-the-Park; Ladies’ Tea; Anniversary banquet); Thanksgiving Day and more.

Our volunteers gave in so many different ways throughout the year. And we’re so thankful for each and every one of them!

But our volunteer opportunities didn’t stop in 2015. We are always looking for volunteers to join the ranks of our volunteer program all the time. We have so many different areas for volunteers to get involved.

In fact, our 2016 Party-in-the-Park will be held on Saturday, October 22 at Wheaton Park in Hagerstown. We are currently looking for volunteers for this fantastic outreach opportunity. This is a great service project for youth groups to get involved with in their own community.  We will need volunteers to help with food, games, music, face and nail painting, crowd control, popcorn machine, cotton candy, set up and tear down, etc.

If you, your family & friends, church group, civic club or more would like to volunteer at our upcoming Party-in-the-Park then give us a call today at 301.739.1165 or email us at hagerstownrescue@verizon.net. We welcome you to help us reach our city and provide hope for those in need!

For more information about all the various volunteer opportunities at The Hope Center go to http://www.volunteerhagerstown.com.

 

 

Please Read Before You Donate A TV

We are always thankful for donations of gently used items from everyone in the community. The profits generated from the sales in our Thrift Stores help to keep The Hope Center free of charge to our residents and guests.

But sometimes things donated end up costing us money. When certain items are broken or can’t be sold, we pay to have them trashed which is money that could be used in better ways around The Hope Center.

With that being said, please take a minute to review our new TV unit policy:

  • We are not able to pick up TV’s
  • If you have a TV that works, please bring it to us during store hours (M-S 9AM-5PM)
  • All TV(s) will be checked on the spot and if they work we will accept them
  • We can only accept TV’s that were manufactured in 2001 or later

We apologize if this is an inconvenience for anyone. We appreciate everyone who donates items to The Hope Center. Please continue to think of us as you clean out your closets, basements & garages! Your gently used items do so much more than you possibly know to help bring hope to the community!

If you have any questions about donations, please call 301.739.1165 or email us at hagerstownrescue@verizon.net.

“When I Was Hungry…You Gave Me Food”

“‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’ Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.'”  -Matthew 25: 34b-40

We are so thankful to be able to give to those in need out of the bounty of what God’s people supply. And while the majority of our food is given to families in need, there is a segment of the population that is often times forgotten.

Senior citizens in our area struggle financially too. Between fixed incomes, the high cost of living and the even higher cost of medical care, older Americans find it hard to afford the necessities of every day life.

This beautiful woman, receiving a food bag from our receptionist, Sue, comes every month to receive her food assistance from The Hope Center.

So when you’re at the grocery store next, grab an extra can of soup or another jar of peanut butter and drop it off at The Hope Center. And remember to say a prayer for the person or people who may receive your food gift. Your generosity can truly make a difference in the life of someone that God loves deeply.

Happy Birthday!

July can be a busy month. With all the summer activities for the residents mixed with all the preparation and excitement of Camp Wild, there are many things that take place in July.

Birthdays take place in July! And one of our new residents celebrated his birthday with us on the first Friday of the month.

Walter, whose birthday is July 3, celebrated his big day with his Hope Center family on July 6.

Walter joined the program in April and has been working hard to get his life back on track. Walter is originally from Annapolis and is ready to hand his life over to God to help him be the man that God intended him to be.

Join us in saying “Happy Birthday” to Walter! We also don’t want to forget to thank Stormy for baking another delicious birthday cake for our residents!

Our Residents Enjoy A Tubing Adventure

With temperatures soaring into the 90’s this week, everyone’s looking for the best way to cool down. Some think it’s by drinking lots of lemonade, sweet tea or water. Others run for the comforts of the AC. But really, most people would just like to take a nice dip in a refreshing pool.
But what do you do if you don’t have a pool? At The Hope Center, you go tubing on the creek!
We are fortunate to own property just outside of Hagerstown near Cearfoss. On the property we have our Good Samaritan Lodge which is home to some of our graduates. Also on that property is our farm which is home to pigs, chickens, and cows. Located on the opposite end of our property is the outdoor recreation area for Camp Wild, which is set to open the 2012 camp season on July 9th.
While there is plenty of land for ministry use, the favorite feature of the property, by far, especially during the summer months is the Conococheague Creek that runs the entire length of our property. During Camp Wild, the kids enjoy swimming and playing in the creek. On the Lodge side, our men enjoy fishing and relaxing on the banks.
But sometimes it’s just so hot that you need to go for a dip. Or grab a tube. And as the thermometer kept pushing higher and higher on Wednesday, our men were able to take a break from their work and classes to enjoy a little time outside in God’s creation.
The Foundations staff and residents were able to have some fun and fellowship as they went tubing down the creek. For some of the guys who were born and raised in the city, this was their first time “tubing on a creek!” It’s always nice for our residents to have a break and just enjoy living as they fight to renew the life that God gave them. It’s important to teach our residents that life is meant to be lived and enjoyed and that can be done without alcohol, drugs or the many other addictions that control people. We want them to see that God has created a beautiful world for us to enjoy and sometimes it’s important to just step away and take time to fellowship and enjoy the gift of each day.
Remember to pray for our residents as they daily fight to overcome the sin that has ruined relationships and destroyed their spirit. Pray that God continues to work in their hearts, and that they will continue to grow and pursue a Godly life even after they leave our program.

Hollywood in Hagerstown!

Back in 2001, western Maryland was a location shoot for the Ted Turner produced major motion picture, “Gods and Generals”.

I’m sure many people remember the news of the filming taking place around the area and some may even remember the premier held at the Maryland Theater.

But what many may not remember is that The Hope Center was actually used as a location shoot for the movie!

The film crew descended on our property in the early morning hours one Sunday. The Hope Center, known as the Hagerstown Union Rescue Mission at the time, was to be the streets of Richmond for a storyline following infamous actor, John Wilkes Booth.

The scene is set as John Wilkes Booth, played by Chris Conner, walks out of a theater in Richmond to a group of fans congregating in the street. The building next to the “theater” was a Confederate Army recruitment center. As John Wilkes Booth leaves the theater, he proceeds to address the crowds gathering in the streets before entering a building.

The day of filming was quite exciting. The Trinity Center, our multi-purpose building just across from the sorting building,  was used for wardrobe, make-up and craft services. In addition to the actors and extras present for the scene filmed, actors Robert Duvall (Robert E. Lee) and Stephen Lang (Stonewall Jackson) visited the set.  A surprise guest, Ted Turner, was also present during the shoot.

The theater in the movie is actually the donation drop dock of our sorting building and the kitchen side of our main building was used as the Confederate recruitment center.

Today, you can still see a bit of Hollywood history on the side of our sorting building. Just to the left of the doors at the dock is a faint, white painted sign reading, ‘Marshall Theater – Deliveries Only’.

The John Wilkes Booth storyline was originally cut from the movie. Theater audiences didn’t see the scenes filmed at The Hope Center. The film was recently re-released as an extended director’s cut on Blu-ray. This extended cut features the scene filmed at The Hope Center. You can pick up the Blu-ray version at stores that sell Blu-ray dvd’s as well as Amazon and other online retailers.